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Nepal stuns Afghanistan to record second T20 win

Saturday, March 22, 2014

CHITTAGONG, Bangladesh - First-timers Nepal upset a higher ranked and more experienced Afghanistan by nine runs in Sylhet to record their second win in the World Twenty20 tournament yesterday.

Nepal, sent in to bat, were lifted by opener Subash Khakurel's career-best 56 to 5-141 and restricted their opponents to 8-132 in a Group A match.

The defeat meant Afghanistan lost two of their three matches and failed to reach the next round.

Paceman Jitendra Mukhiya, who finished with 3-18 in four overs, jolted Afghanistan with two early wickets, while spinner Shakti Gauchan took two wickets in one over to leave Afghanistan in tatters on 50-5.

Shafiqullah Shafiq (36) and Asghar Stanikzai (49) did their best to stop the collapse. But a 24-run target in the last over proved way beyond Afghanistan's reach.

Earlier Khakurel anchored the Nepalese innings with some sensible batting, adding an invaluable 76 for the fourth wicket with Sharad Vesawkar who made 37.

Khakurel hit six boundaries and a six during his 53-ball knock before falling to paceman Shapoor Zadran, the best of the Afghan bowlers with 2-19.

Nepal will now await the outcome of the last match in the group, with hosts Bangladesh needing a win against the United Arab Emirates to go through to the next round.

Ireland, the Netherlands and Zimbabwe are in contention to qualify for the next round from Group B.

The top team from each group will join eight seeded teams in the Super-10 stage, starting today.

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